Nicole Goldfarb, MA, CCC-SLP, COM®

Sleep-Disordered Breathing and Myofunctional Therapy: An In-Depth Review With Screening and Treatment Tools

Course Description
Sleep-disordered breathing (SDB), ranging from snoring to sleep apnea, affects a multitude of individuals of all ages, from infancy to adulthood. Importantly, in many cases sleep-disordered breathing and clinical markers for poor orofacial growth actually began in childhood and was undetected. The negative ramifications of sleep-disordered breathing on health and development is profound, affecting nearly every cell in the body. This lecture will highlight these negative consequences and introduce you to the role of Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy in the management and treatment of sleep-disordered breathing through case studies and some of the most recent and riveting research around. This lecture will open your mind to the idea that an orofacial myofunctional disorder is a clinical marker of sleep-disordered breathing. In addition, a persistent and common problem in the treatment of sleep-disordered breathing is hypotonia of the orofacial muscular complex and mouth breathing. It is well known that orofacial myofunctional disorders coexist in a large population of people with sleep-disordered breathing and sleep apnea. Thus, Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy is an important and often necessary component in the treatment of SDB, and early identification and treatment of orofacial myofunctional disorders is paramount to success. The 3 systems and their reciprocal roles will be analyzed and discussed: Medical System, Dental System, and Myofunctional System. This lecture will also emphasize the importance of early intervention in the management and prevention of sleep-disordered breathing and potential orthodontic comorbidities. Lastly, a few screening tools to help in the identification of such issues will be discussed.

Learning Outcomes

The participant will be able to:

  1. Recognize the impact of SDB (from MB, snoring, UARS, to OSA) on overall health
  2. Discuss the basis of Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy (OMT)
  3. Explain the relationship of proper oral rest postures and functioning to orofacial growth and development, the airway, and sleep-disordered breathing
  4. Become more adept at identifying myofunctional disorders based on physical and clinical findings
  5. Grasp the importance of early intervention in identifying and treating myofunctional disorders
  6. Identify how to begin to screen patients and alert referral sources to such issues


Timed Agenda

  • 5 min   Introduction, disclaimers
  • 5 min   Video of SDB
  • 5 min   Why Should You Be Concerned?
  • 20 min SDB Information, Facts, Anatomy, health concerns
  • 10 min What Is Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy
  • 5 min   The 3 Systems: Medical, Dental, and Myofunctional
  • 20 min Case Studies
  • 15 min Research
  • 10 min Early Intervention
  • 20 min Screening Tools
  • 5 min   Conclusion

Key Points/Outline

  • Why Should You Be Concerned?
  • SDB Information, Facts, Anatomy
  • What Is Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy
  • The 3 Systems: Medical, Dental, and Myofunctional Case Studies
  • Research
  • Early Intervention
  • Screening Tools

.2 CE Credits

Fri, Mar 19, 2021 4:00PM - 6:00 PM EST